The Mangrove Tree: Planting Trees to Feed Families

By Susan L. Roth, Cindy Trumbore
Illustrated by Susan L. Roth

Hardcover: out of stock

For a long time, the people of Hargigo, a village in the tiny African country of Eritrea, were living without enough food for themselves and their animals. The families were hungry, and their goats and sheep were hungry too. Then along came a scientist, Dr. Gordon Sato, who helped change their lives for the better. And it all started with some special trees.

These are the trees,
Mangrove trees,
That were planted by the sea.

With alternating verse and prose passages, The Mangrove Tree invites readers to discover how Dr. Sato’s mangrove tree-planting project transformed an impoverished village into a self-sufficient community. This fascinating story is a celebration of creativity, hard work—and all those mangrove trees that were planted by the sea!

Check out the research-based read aloud and paired text lessons for The Mangrove Tree created by the staff at the award-winning, non-profit

Check out the educator activities for The Mangrove Tree, a title featured in RIF’s Multicultural Book Collections. To find other free activities that inspire young readers as well as learn more about Reading Is Fundamental, visit us at

About the Creators

Thumb_thumb Susan L. Roth - Author, Illustrator

creates unique mixed-media collage illustrations that have appeared in numerous award-winning children’s books, many of which she also wrote. Her book, Listen to the Wind, spent a year on the New York Times best seller list. The Mangrove Tree, which was released in 2011 and addressed Dr. Gordon Sato's mangrove tree-planting project, was the winner of Jane Addams Children's Book Award. Roth lives in New York. You can find her online at

Photo: Daniel Gonzales

Thumb_thumb Cindy Trumbore - Author

has been involved with young people’s literature for most of her career. A former editor in children’s book publishing, she now writes children’s books, edits books for classrooms, and teaches writing. Her past titles include The Genie in the Book, Discovering the Titanic, and The Mangrove Tree with her friend Susan L. Roth. She lives with her family in New Jersey. Her Web site is

Photo: Krysti Sabins

About This Title


Hardcover: 9781600604591


Jane Addams Children's Book Award
Jane Addams Peace Association

Starred Review
School Library Journal

Starred Review
Publishers Weekly

Best Children's Books of the Year: Outstanding Merit
Bank Street College of Education

Notable Books for a Global Society
International Reading Association (IRA)

Cooperative Children's Book Center (CCBC)

Green Earth Book Award, Children's Nonfiction
The Nature Generation

Notable Children's Book

Orbis Pictus Award for Outstanding Nonfiction, Honor Book
National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE)

Outstanding Achievement in Children's Literature
Wisconsin Library Association

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Guided Reading:




Interest Level:

Grades 1 - 6

Reading Level:

Grades 3 - 4


Animal/Biodiversity/Plant Adaptations, Nature/Science, Nonfiction, Responsibility, Overcoming Obstacles, Multiethnic interest, Mentors, Food, Farming, Environment/Nature, Education, Cultural Diversity, African/African American Interest, Biography/Memoir, Asian/Asian American Interest, Animals, Earth/Sun/Moon System, Empathy/Compassion, Exploring Ecosystems, Gratitude, How To, Human Impact On Environment/Environmental Sustainability , Informational Text, Leadership, Optimism/Enthusiasm, Persistence/Grit, Respect/Citizenship, Water

Part of These Collections